Major push this weekend to try and locate John Concannon

John Concannon.
John Concannon.

A major search covering the whole of Inch Island will take place this weekend to try and locate missing Derry man John Concannon.

Volunteers are now being sought to help in this, the latest of a series of fresh searches in Inishowen over recent weeks.

The last known photo of John Concannon as he alighted from the Fernabbey bus on Tuesday November 10

The last known photo of John Concannon as he alighted from the Fernabbey bus on Tuesday November 10

Those who can spare time this Sunday, January 10, are being asked to gather at the carpark of the Halfway House Bar at Tooban at 12pm.

It is expected that, like last week, those gathered will be taken in groups via minibus to different locations by rescue specialists to begin searching at particular spots across Inch.

People will be collected again once the search is completed or whenever they needed to go.

Mr Concannon’s brother Michael said they would be very grateful to anyone who could spare any time this Sunday, which will mark the two month point since John disappeared.

The last confirmed sighting of Mr Concannon was on CCTV footage on the Lenamore Road on the evening of November 10.

The 71-year-old from Altcar Park in the Galliagh area of Derry has dementia and is unable to communicate.

It is believed he got on the wrong bus at Foyle Street bus depot in the city centre and may have become disorientated when he alighted from the bus close to the border with Muff.

There were several unconfirmed reports of sightings of John in the Burt and Burnfoot areas in the days since he disappeared.

His brother said those co-ordinating the searches, and who last week focused on the area from Bridgend to Fahan, said they wanted to make sure and cover Inch Island as well.

Michael Concannon, who, with other relatives, has been taking part in the numerous searches, said:

“They were saying that there are three roads into Inch Island and they want to do every field and lane way.

“I would appeal to people to help in the search this Sunday if at all possible. Even if they only have an hour, lifts can be arranged to take them back.”

Mr Concannon said the co-ordinator, the search and rescue experts and the hundreds of volunteers who have helped in the search to date have been “absolutely brilliant”.

He added that the experts have been extremely thorough in conducting their own searches.

Those turning out on Sunday are advised to dress for the weather, and to wear suitable clothing, gloves, scarf etc and a good pair of sturdy boots /shoes or waterboots.

Anyone with high visibility jackets or clothing is asked to remember to wear these as the search co-ordinators only have a few that we can provide.

Anyone who would like to help in the search but has no lift to the meeting point is asked to message the ‘Foot Search For John Concannon’ Facebook page and the co-ordinators will do their best to get a car share sorted.